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Battery recycling gets backing from Tokyo

Illustration of a battery curving into an infinity symbol

Illustration: Annelise Capossela/Axios

Cirba Solutions, a Charlotte, N.C.-based lithium-ion battery recycling tech and processing company, this morning announced a $50 million minority investment from Marubeni, one of the major Tokyo trading conglomerates.

Why it matters: It's a sizable investment — and adds to the $327 million that the company has already brought in.

What's happening: Cirba has six operational facilities and is planning a seventh in Eloy, Arizona.

  • In December, it announced a $245 million investment from EQT Infrastructure, plus another $82 million in grants from the U.S. Department of Energy to expand its processing facilities.

Context: Cirba says its processing facilities can supplement the supply of raw materials for EV batteries. Its partners include GM.

State of play: Companies in this space include:

  • Redwood Materials, a Nevada-based unicorn that's collaborating with Ford, Toyota, VW, Panasonic and others.
  • Ascend Elements, a Massachusetts-based battery recycler that raised a $200 million Series C in October led by Fifth Wall.
  • Li-Cycle, a Toronto-based battery recycling company that's partnering with Vietnamese electric vehicle manufacturer VinFast.
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